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graceful to a republic, incompatible of temporary destitution; and for the with a popular government. The permanent support of widows, the aged, shameful word beggar should be un- and the impotent, as well as those who known in a republican dictionary, and had been mutilated in the public serthe picture of mendicity on the earth vice, and their widows and children.has hitherto been nothing but that of “Fas est et ab hoste doceri.” The true constant conspiracies of the class of principles of the management of the proprietors against that of non-proprie. poor are to be found in the report of tors. Let us leave to insolent despotism the Committee of Public Salvation, and the construction of hospitals, to bury regular governments will never act so the unfortunates whom it has created, wisely for their own as well as their or to support for a moment the slaves people's interest, as when they take whom it could not devour. That hor- this leaf out of the book of their enerible generosity of the despot aids him mies. * in deceiving the people. Despotism 38. Robespierre, shortly before his has favoured the mendicants, only be- fall, thus summed up the principles of cause they were base and suppliant. his administration : "I have spoken of But what has it done for the general the virtue of the people; but that virwide-spread indigence of the country? tue, demonstrated by the whole RevoWhat for tottering age or helpless in- lution, would not alone suffice to defend fancy? What for the bereaved widow us against the factions who never cease or the weeping orphan ? Nothing ; to corrupt and tear asunder the Rebecause they were independent, and public. Why is that? Because there would rather perish than fall at its feet. are two wholly different people in The true principles of beneficence are France—the mass of the citizens, pure, to succour, in their own homes, infancy simple, loving justice, and friendly to and youth, where it is destitute ; manhood, liberty; that mass which has conquered where it is sick or without employment; its enemies within, and shaken the old age, where it is impotent or infirm." throne of tyrants: the other is an agIn pursuance of these just and enlight-gregation of rascals and intriguers, of ened principles, a great variety of re- aristocrats and charlatans, who would gulations were brought forward and de- convert power and instruction to no creed for the relief, in their own homes other purpose but their own aggran—not in hospitals or by money charity disement. As long as that impure race

-of orphan and destitute children, and exists, the condition of the Republic their education ; for the succour of will be unhappy and precarious. Let middle-aged men and women in a state them reign for a day, and the country

* The provisions of this law, evidently drawn up by Robespierre, and agreed to by For the first, 7,144,000 or 285, 760 a-year. the Committee of Public Salvation and the For the second, 2,040,000 .. 81,600 Convention, are very remarkable, and may For the third, 3,060,000 .. 122,400 serve as a model for many governments, For sick poor) which in other respects with justice decry in their own

160,000 .. 6,400 their proceedings. Its details are far too houses, minute for a work of general history, but the principles on which they were founded were

12,404,000.. 496,160 these :-1. That the succour of the destitute, the orphans, and the impotent, is a duty of The sum allotted to each pauper receiving the state, and should be discharged by the public aid was to be ten sous (4d.) a-day for public functionaries, and from the state funds. each adult, and six sous (2 d.) a-day for each 2. That the distribution of relief should be child under ten years of age. The whole remade by a public officer, to be appointed for lief was to be given in the houses of the poor; that purpose in each of the departments of and it was calculated that, in the first instance, the Republic. 3. That in each department the number of families in health receiving there shall be opened a register, to be en- succour would be 106,000, or 425,000 indivititled “ Book of National Beneficence,” in duals, and the sick 21,000. There can be no which shall be a title, 1st, For infirm or aged doubt that these numbers were below what cultivators ; 2d, For infirm or aged artisans; would have been required; but these enact3d, For mothers and widows. For these ments contain the principles of all right legisclasses it was calculated that there would be lation on the subject. --See Histoire Parlemenrequired in all the departments

taire de la Révolution, xxxiii. 37, 68.


is lost. It is for you to deliver your francs, or £235,920,000. So immense selves from them by imposing energy a mass of paper, amounting at the very and unchangeable concert. In saying lowest estimate to three times the whole these words, I am perhaps sharpening present circulation of either France or poniards against myself, and it is for England, taking both specie and bankthat very reason that I pronounce them. notes into view, of course could not ex. You will persevere in your principles ist in circulation without producing a and your triumphant march; you will depreciation in its value to a ruinous stifle crime and save your country. I extent, the more especially as the whole have lived enough. I have seen the transactions between man and man in French people start from the depth of the country were at a stand, in conseservitude and debasement to the sum- quence of the blasting operation of the mit of glory and of republican virtue. law of the maximum; and foreign comI have seen their fetters broken, and merce, equally with domestic expendithe guilty thrones which oppressed the ture, was annihilated. But as the asearth shaken by their triumphant arms. signats bore a forced circulation, and I have seen-more marvellous still—a the refusal to take them at par would prodigy which the corruptions of the probably lead to a denunciation at the monarchy, and the inexperience of the nearest revolutionary committee, there first periods of the Revolution, could was no alternative but to shun the peshardly have permitted us to hope—an tilence as much possible, and avoid assembly invested with the power of either selling anything, or engaging in the French nation, marching with a any transaction whatever in which mofirm and rapid step towards the com- ney was employed. But creditors could pletion of the public happiness --de-not do this, and fraudulent debtors voted to the people, and to the triumph gladly bought up assignats, and forced of equality, worthy of giving to the a discharge of their debts for a fiftieth world the signal of liberty and the ex or hundredth part of their real value. ample of every virtue. Complete, then, 40. While the assignats were thus citizens, your sublime work! You have sweeping away the whole capital of the placed yourselves in the front rank, to state, the march of the Revolution was sustain the first assault of the enemies equally devastating and relentless in the of humanity. We will deserve that destruction of human life. The prohonour, and we will trace with our ceedings of the Revolutionary Tribublood the path to immortality. May nal, after the law of 22d Prairial had you ever display that unalterable en- passed, were so brief as hardly to de ergy, which is required to enable you serve the name of a trial; while the coto resist the monsters of the universe lumns of the Moniteur of the following combined against you, and enjoy in day exhibited fatal proof, that to be peace the fruits of your virtues, and arraigned before that tribunal, and sent the blessings of the people !”

to the guillotine, were in general the 39. But in the midst of these warm an same thing.* Bands of thirty, forty, and ticipations and eloquent declamations, the finances of the Republic were daily pidity came out subsequently on the trial of

* A curious proof of this extraordinary rafalling into a more deplorable condition, | Fouquier Tinville. Wolf, one of the clerks of and its prodigious expenditure, exter- the Revolutionary Tribunal, being asked how nal and internal, was sustained only by it happened that some persons had been exa ceaseless and constantly increasing sigued, gave the following answer: No issue of assignats. By a report of Cam- criminal could be executed without a certifibon, the minister of finance, on 16th cate of the sentence from the principal clerk May 1794, it appeared that the assignats would not give the certificate till he had the

of court, and the clerk, for his own safety, which had been created up to that pe sentence signed by the judge. But the time riod amounted to the enormous sum being too short for copying out these judg. of 8,778,000,000 francs (£351,120,000 ments the same day, the clerk obtained the sterling); of which number there still fill up each day at his leisure, and in the

judge's signature to a form, which he could remained in circulation 5,898,000,000 I mean time he ran no risk in giving the requi


Executed 25 26 27 26 23 18 27 25 30 43 33


25 26

6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 19 20 21 22 23 24


fifty persons, were successively brought | victims understood, that no tears were up, often two sets in a day, composed shed, nor did mournful visages appear of men and women, old, middle-aged, even in the streets when the melancholy and young, generally wholly unconnect- procession proceeded along, conveying ed with each other, and who never knew them to the scaffold; and if a dead body of each other's existence till they heard was seen on the wayside, the traveller, each other's names in one accusation. as in the days recorded by Tacitus, Royalists, Dantonists, Anarchists, and averted his eyes lest he should be seen Constitutionalists, were all huddled to- to shudder, and denounced at the Jagetherin one indictment, under a charge cobin Committee as a counter-revoluof “conspiracy against the Republic;" tionist.† and that fatal word was sufficient to warrant proceeding for life and death + The following were the numbers daily against a crowd of men and women, the Reign of Terror:

executed in Paris during the latter period of total strangers to each other, but who had all, from some ground or other, 17 Prairial or 5 June 1794 awakened the jealousy of the Decemvirs. 18 The slightest symptom of disapproba- 19 tion at the existing régime—a word, a look, a gesture, a sigh, a tear, were sufficient, if deponed to by the most in- 23 famous witness, to secure an immediate 24 condemnation; and upon a charge of conspiracy with others whose principles 27 and connexions were diametrically opposed to theirs, thus included with them

1 Messidor in the same doom. In this way crowds of Royalists and Anarchists were sent to the scaffold together, because the one

27 had been connected with those who blamed the Revolution for going too far, the other for not going far enough. Even a declaration by women that they

27 were pregnant often failed in procuring 12 so much as a temporary suspension of 13

1 July their fate.* A deplorable equality was

15 observed between the number of per- 16

31 sons indicted one day before the Revo- 17 lutionary Tribunal, and that which appeared next day in the columns of the Moniteur as having perished on the 22 scaffold; and so generally was the dan- 23

12 ger of expressing sympathy with the 24 site certificate. But in this instance, where 27 the sentence produced is still blank, Legris, the clerk who wrote it, was himself arrested 29, at five o'clock next morning, and executed

1 Thermidor at four o'clock in the afternoon." — Procès

47 de FOUQUIER TINVILLE, Bull. du Trib. Rév. No. 22.

* “I saw," said Wolf, a clerk of the Revolutionary Tribunal, “ at least ten or twelve women executed the day they had declared themselves pregnant. Their cases were, in

55 deed, referred to the medical men; but on

27 - Robespierre's fall their declining, through terror, to speak 10

- With Robespierre 27 decidedly, they were all executed."-Réponse 11

29 - Robespierre's party 73 de WOLF; Procès de FOUQUIER TINVILLE, -Compiled from the Moniteur of the above

dates, a few days after each.


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